Cheery-O Quilt, New Quilters, Quilting

Kitchen Table Quilting

When I started quilting, I always brought my sewing machine to my kitchen table. It was the best place to spread everything out, and get some work done while still being in touch with my family on the weekends. Eventually, I bought a little sewing machine table and set up shop in my extra bedroom, which is nice, but…I find I miss the kitchen table.

I miss talking to the kids as they go through the kitchen, commenting on the ball game or laughing at America’s Funniest Home Videos, which for some reason is always on my family room TV. (And it still cracks everybody up. 🙂 Every video. Every time.)

Isn’t that always the way? We work hard to make things better, but so often what we think of as “better” just…isn’t. And then we wish things could go back to the way they were.

Quilting is a perfect example. Heck, living in America is a perfect example. Everyone’s trying to sell you something to make your work faster, easier, better. A new thread, a new sewing machine, a new tool, the perfect scissors, another ruler…it just goes on and on and on.

Frankly, it’s tiresome. I’ve got a closet full of fancy whatcha-ma-call-its and doo-dads that don’t work any better than the tools quilters used fifty years ago. So I am calling it quits on buying fancy one-trick gadgets. I’m taking the approach Alton Brown took in his kitchen on Good Eats many years ago – if a tool doesn’t multi-task, it isn’t allowed in.

And I’m bringing my sewing machine back to the kitchen table tomorrow.

In honor of this new attitude, I took photos of Hattie’s Fan Quilt on my kitchen table today. It is finally finished, it is beautiful, and I hope Grandma Hattie and my Aunt Carol love it as much as I do.


I struggled with the block design a bit on this one. I wanted to do an allover secondary design (I’ve been studying them), but since all the fans were facing one way, I couldn’t see a way to make that work. I could’ve just done an edge-to-edge pattern, I suppose, but I really wanted to embellish those pretty fans. I was thinking of Chinese fans, something like these below:


So I went block by block, put flowers on the fan handles, and extended the fan blades out to the block edges. I alternated the fan blades with “ribbon candy” and a simple straight line to mimic the folding fan blades. It made a nice sunburst pattern on the back. A sunny pattern for a pretty quilt. 🙂


In other quilt news, I started quilting the Cheery-O Quilt for my nephew, Oscar. Here’s a peek at the progress:


I love Oscar’s quilt. The colors are so pretty, deep purples and blues and then a pop of green every now and then. The backing is a deep purple minky, so it is extra soft and cuddly. I am quilting it with meandering swirls and stars. (Trying hard to keep the stars from looking too flower-like. Flowers are my factory default setting.)

Have a great weekend, everyone!




6 thoughts on “Kitchen Table Quilting”

  1. Love the fan quilt. That pattern always brings back old memories of my aunts working around a quilting frame. When I taught beginning quilting classes I always told my students that there was only one ‘magic’ quilting tool and it was not special scissors, new rulers, or anything like that. The magic tool is PRACTICE. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Those quilts are stunning!! You did a wonderful job and anyone would be thrilled with them. I have a tiny kitchen table and live alone so the sewing room works for me. But I do remember when the kids were growing up and we turned the dining room into office and sewing space between the kitchen and living room. Our table went in front of the window in the living room so everyone passed through those rooms. It was nice to be connected while I worked. Had forgotten all about that. This brings up some nice memories. Thank you. Keep up the fabulous work.


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